Image Source: Jeremy Bezanger on Unsplash
Since Elon Musk announced last month that he had purchased a 9% interest in Twitter, the stock has lost all of its gains.
On Monday, the shares fell 7% to $37.80, below the $39.31 closing price on April 1, the last trading session before Musk declared his minority stake in Twitter. Concerns that Musk may cancel his agreement to buy Twitter for $44 billion, or $54.20 per share, have caused investors to dump the stock.
While the stock had been falling since early last week, it increased after Musk tweeted on Friday that the deal had been put on hold until he learns more about fraudulent accounts and how ubiquitous they are on the platform. Later, he stated that he’s “still committed to acquisition,” prompting Twitter Chairman Bret Taylor to answer, “We’re committed to acquisition as well.”
Musk, the billionaire CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, sparked more concerns over the weekend by continuing to tweet about issues with Twitter’s algorithm and other “possible faults in the code.”
Twitter stated on Thursday that it was halting hiring, rescinding offers, and slashing costs. Two other executives have departed the company, including Kayvon Beykpour, the head of consumer products, who claims that CEO Parag Agrawal ordered him to go.
Agrawal said Friday that he still expects the sale to Musk to go through, but that he’s prepared to continue “leading and operating Twitter” in case it doesn’t.
In a series of tweets on Monday, Agrawal outlined how Twitter combats spam and determines what percentage of accounts are fake on the platform, noting that the company can’t publicly disclose specific details of the process because it relies in part on private user information.
“We shared an overview of the estimation process with Elon a week ago and look forward to continuing the conversation with him, and all of you,” Agrawal wrote.
Musk replied to Agrawal’s tweet, saying: “So how do advertisers know what they’re getting for their money? This is fundamental to the financial health of Twitter.”
He replied to another of Agrawal’s tweets with a smiling poop emoji.
With the continued slide in the stock, Twitter is now valued at a little over $29 billion, or roughly $15 billion below Musk’s agreed upon purchase price.
Opinions expressed by California Gazette contributors are their own.